What are the major initiatives taken at your end towards maintaining the Mangalore airport at par with international standards?
The Airport Authority of India has taken up several development works on the Mangalore Airport since 2002. Significant among them is the construction of the second runway and the new integrated terminal building, inaugurated in May, to meet with the increasing international passenger traffic in this sector.
Mangalore being an educational hub and land of historic importance with many temples, can attract tourists. With the long term vision, AAI is adopting various measures to meet the future demand. Not just the airport, the city as such is cleanliness conscious and is well maintained. But with the changing infrastructure and need for mechanised environment support services, we have outsourced the activity through a tender process.
Unlike the older structures, which are mainly made of cement or concrete, airports today have a lot of design elements with aluminium cladding and glass curtain walls. Even inside the airport, the floors have vitrified tiles which require special maintenance. In the yester years, maintenance was done once in three or four months and the walls painted once the paint had worn out. But, in the newly constructed buildings, the exterior and the interior have to be cleaned and maintained at different levels every day, every week and every month. It’s a gigantic task for the housekeeping.
In a survey conducted by the AAI, the various cleaning machines required for maintaining airports have been laid down and the outsourced cleaning contractor has acquired the specified cleaning equipment and cleaning chemicals. Besides, we have installed suitable equipment in the airport through tender process.
What is the criterion for choosing the vendor?
Most government tenders are chosen on the L1 basis, but while making the selection, two-point criteria is taken into consideration – quality and cost efficiency. From among the vendors chosen on the L1 basis, we have ensured to select the one who can deliver quality services with qualified labour and good material. In fact, the material and labour content has been quantified so that there are no hardships in maintaining the building.
The SOPs have been laid down and service contractor has to abide by them. The terminal managers have been trained to closely supervise the cleaning and maintenance activity at every level of the airport. At the same time, they will also be guiding the outsourced workers in meeting the requirement of the airport.
The cleaning performance of the workers are measured and monitored almost every hour. Critical areas like toilets are checked by our supervisors every hour to ensure that it is always kept clean. The Mangalore airport has scored 85% in customer satisfaction survey index.
Under the earlier contract that was outsourced to Manipal Servicecorp Facility Management Pvt Ltd, we had not given the specifications but this time we have done that. We have outsourced services on a three-year contract which will be reviewed and if found satisfactory will be extended by two more years.
Durga Facilities will not only be maintaining the 18,200sqm area of the new SEZ building of Mangalore airport but will also be servicing the old terminal building under the environment support services contract.
How are you planning to spread awareness among passengers to keep clean?
In this city which is already clean, people naturally understand the importance of a clean environment and refrain from littering. Around 26 plus domestic flights are operating at present and by winter we will have 38 every day. In the international sector, we have a movement of over 50 flights in a week. On a daily basis, there is a movement of around 2000-2500 passengers and more than 4000 visitors.
At the airport, even if passengers have left behind waste or litter, the staff immediately clear the area and throw waste in the designated place. The maintenance of the approach area has also been outsourced to Durga facilities, but the job here is need-based. Other areas like landscaping/cutting grass, waste management and purchase have been separately contracted to different vendors. In short, we are ensuring that the airport is maintained clean and neat.